Making of a bonnet | Video

Itching to make a video today. Raining outside – already made a video of that. Hmmmm….I’ll make a short video showing clips of me making a bonnet! Not instructional. Just entertainment. I love making these sweet little props!

Total time making the bonnet would’ve been close to maybe 45 min start to finish. With making the video it took FOREVER! haha

Making of a bonnet | LinnyJo from Melinda Fain on Vimeo.

I’ll have a super sweet video to share next, hopefully, if all goes well Thursday!! Stay tuned!

(Oh! If you have a Vimeo account follow me and I’ll share the love!)

Lots Going On

Feeding off my last post I wanted to let you know there’s been lots going on behind-the-scenes at LinnyJo Designs.

I’m gearing up for what will hopefully be my best year yet!!

Here’s a little peek of what I’ve been doing (excuse the cell phone pics)

Photo Jan 18, 7 50 52 PM Photo Jan 19, 6 01 40 PM Photo Jan 19, 8 21 43 PM Photo Jan 21, 5 32 58 PMTop to bottom: PVC pipes for backdrop stand assembly, 4 yards of vinyl for newborn posing nest assembly, me sewing the vinyl together, and the final backdrop stand completed.

I’d show you the newborn nest completed but I don’t have the bean bag filler in yet so it just looks like a shapeless lump of vinyl. Hopefully it will arrive by the end of the week. I’m so excited to see it done!! And for my first use out of it!

I’ve ordered some cute Valentine’s Day props and of course I’m making a few of my own. Hoping it all comes together in the next week or two so I can offer some Valentine’s sessions for the babies.

If you’re local (Parker Co TX) and you’d like to keep up with my photography session news and announcements please subscribe to my newsletter. There are two locations to do this. One is on my Facebook page, click the “Email Signup” tab, or on my website, hover over “About” and then click “Pre shoot Info”. At the bottom there will be a box to enter your email address.

That’s it for now!!


DIY Props {Gold Masquerade Mask for TGHP}

I am so excited to tell you about a new project that just started this September!!! It’s called The Gold Hope Project.

The Mission:

The Gold Hope Project is a group of photographers that have come together to capture the moments that your family holds so dear to their heart. Some of us have been touched by the presence of cancer, and some have not, but we have all been given a gift that we would like to share with you.

More precious than the gold that represents them, children are our future. This year alone, approximately 13,500 parents will have to listen to a doctor tell them, “Your child has cancer.” 
Can you imagine?

There are twelve major types of childhood cancers. From there, they are broken down into three groups.

  • Leukemias (cancer of the blood)
  • Lymphomas (cancer of the immune system)
  • Solid tumors (cancer in bones, organs, or tissue)

While the survival rate has increased over the past 40 years from 10% to nearly 80%, the number of children diagnosed increases slightly each year. And, while there have been many medical advances in the field of cancer research, treatment of pediatric cancer is still very aggressive and can have many lasting side effects. Some pediatric brain tumors, such as brain stem gliomas and pontine gliomas, are terminal upon diagnosis and no new protocols have been developed in 30 years. Despite the astonishing number of children being treated each year (approximately 40,000), funding for the research and implementation of better treatment remains largely underfunded.

I have been accepted as a volunteer photographer for this amazing group!! There are photographers worldwide and it’s still growing!! So many wonderful things are yet to come, so keep checking their website or Facebook page. If you have a fighter or know of a child fighting cancer please have them apply here.

Okay now to the real reason for this particular post. We are encouraged to use something gold in our photo sessions. I went out shopping the other day for something just to get my gold prop stash started. I came across a gold masquerade mask at Joann Fabric. I bought some gold sequins, really wanted gold feathers but they didn’t carry gold. Darn it!!!!

Anyhoo…I wanted to share the project with anyone involved so that you know you don’t have to spend a ton of money, just takes a little bit of creativity and time. I searched Etsy for a similar project and didn’t find any that were “kid friendly” and cheap. So I think I made the right decision to make my own mask.

As you can see there were very little supplies and you can make it as simple or fancy as you’d like. If I ever make another I’ll buy the strands of sequins that you can find over in the ribbon section. Yea, I hot glued each little sequin!!! I would’ve put sequins around the entire edge where the glitter is, but I was over it by then!! haha

If you have a gold DIY please leave a link in the comment section so we can all visit and see!!!

DIY Newborn Platform Project Pt 1

I have studio envy. Well, at least when it comes to my newborn sessions. I don’t have the ability at the moment to stock up on those wonderful backdrops. I just can’t justify spending well over $100 on a set up like that. Right now my stance is: if I can make something cheaper and better to suite me then that’s what I need to do. Plus it needs to be mobile.

With that said I stumbled across a photo on Oh Love Photography’s Facebook page. See the photo here. I was inspired.

We made a trip to Lowes to check out lumber. I popped a squat right in the middle of the aisle and laid everything out. I wanted to go with the cheaper shorter boards but my dear bf wouldn’t let me settle for the smaller ones.

Here’s our supply list:

  • (12) 3/8″ x 6 x 36″ Select Pine boards – 6 across makes two platforms
  • (6) 1/2″ x 2 x 36″ Select Pine support boards – 3 for each platform
  • Minwax Polyshade Bombay Mahogany Stain
  • Bristle brush for both paint and stain (some say paint only so read the label)
  • Foam brush
  • Very fine sandpaper 150 & 220 grit
  • Old t-shirt
  • Various objects for distressing
  • Rit dye in black
  • 1″ finishing nails

This will be a multi-post project so items may be added or discarded throughout the process.

I started by lightly sanding the boards. I hate sanding so believe me when I say I didn’t go crazy.

Then we took the wood outside and distressed them. You can use any objects that will make an indention or mark. Here’s what we used.You can actually see directly to the left of the nail leaning on the wire brush there’s the indention he made by hammering the side of the nail into the board. I’m so glad he thought to distress it because it looks amazing!!!

Next use the foam brush and paint the Rit dye over the entire board then wipe with the old shirt. You’ll find the Rit dye in the detergent aisle. I guess I should tell you that my ultimate goal was to have a dark rich floor look for my setup. The dye soaks into the indentions from all the hammering and whatnot and gives it a more aged look.

The board on the left has already had one coat of stain. The board on the right has been treated with the dye then lightly sanded with the 150 grit.

The far left board wasn’t sanded as much after the dye so it was darker after the first coat of stain. This is how I liked it. Depending on your preference either sand a lot or not so much.

Left to right – store bought wood, after 1 coat stain, after Rit dye.

Here’s another example of the difference sanding makes.

So far we’ve applied one coat of stain to about 8 of the boards. The other 4 will have to wait until this weekend. Here’s a tip while staining…wear latex gloves and ladies put your hair in a ponytail!! I just had to cut a little piece of my hair because somehow I got a clump of stain in it. Don’t ask!!!

Okay that’s all I have for now. Stay tuned for the next update!!



Spring Cleaning

I’m thinking its the coming of Spring but oh my goodness I have been in the most organization/cleaning mode I’ve ever been in!! Has it hit you yet? The mornings are the best  with the cool weather, mid afternoon I need a break, but then the evenings rock again!

I’m staying with my parents as I get my business up and going and so the organization/cleaning has been happening at their place, not my own. Sunday I forced my dad to take down an old shed that was about to fall down anyways. We emptied it, took boards down off two sides, then he pulled the rest down. We are saving the tin roof and some of the wood but most is so old we can’t salvage it. We worked all Sunday and my prize was a slight sunburn, the first of 2012. In it’s place we’ll build a replacement building that will serve as storage and a garden shed, since it’s located right by the garden. Before and after pictures will be posted as the build starts.

Then as if that wasn’t enough, yesterday I start cleaning out the tiniest room we have in the house. It’s so tiny that it becomes disorderly super fast. Old carpet (that was just laying there) is out. Tons of stuff was donated to Goodwill today and more was trashed. The closet got cleaned out today and I took the door off. I’ve been scouring Pinterest for craft room ideas and I am so blown away by what some lucky people get to have!!!! I started a “Craft Room Inspiration” Board if you’d like to check it out.

The room is only about 9×9 with one wall taken up by windows, one the has the closet, one has the entry door, leaving only one clean wall. I’ve got lots of ideas and I can’t wait to get it completely empty so we can get started! I just found this linoleum lacquer stuff  and am thinking about painting the floor and putting some sort of stencil on it. Way cheaper and more creative than replacing it all together! I’ve taken many photos of the progress and look forward to photographing the final result.

If you’ve got a craft room you’re super proud of I’d LOVE to see it!! Post a link in the comment section!! Or if you need to start a craft room project, too, let’s do it together and share ideas, inspiration, progress, and final results!!! That would be so fun! Comment below and let me know!!

Never Enough {For Sale}

If you know me personally you probably know that I have a ton of creative energy and photography just doesn’t get it all out. So in between shoots I am pretty much always making something, whether it be for  myself, Christmas presents (I made almost all mine last year), or to sell.

I previously posted how I tried my hand at making fabric flower rosettes and after wearing some that I had created I started to get the feeling that people would buy them. Or threaten me within an inch of my life if I didn’t make them one *cough, Missy!*  I don’t have a ton made up but I have enough to show examples to sell and take orders if needed.

I will not be putting these in my Etsy shop but will sell directly to you. I will also be putting some at Sobo Fashion Lounge in Fort Worth where I already sell my pillows.

  • The bobby pins are $2.95 each.
  • The hair clips are made on either an alligator clip or snapping barrette and are $15 each.
  • Necklaces are $29
  • Brooches range from $6 – $9
  • Headbands coming soon!

Confession: These were made while listening to the World Series from the other room in an effort to calm me down. Didn’t work!

DIY {Rosettes}

Pinterest has once again paid off. I have admired these fabric rosettes for a long time now and until Pinterest never even attempted to make them. I found a great video tutorial here and began right away. I twisted and glued until my hands cramped….took a break….then twisted and glued some more!! Here are a few that I came up with,

Then after a fun trip to Joann’s fabric/craft store in Fort Worth I had all the supplies to turn these into a wonderful, fun handmade headband!!

These cost me almost nothing to make. The purple fabric was a pillow case I bought from Ross months ago for another project, the other fabric was free scraps from my old job, the center embellishments were in my stash. The only things I had to buy were the actual headband and the felt to line in the underside for a finished look. While at Joann’s I loaded up on a few more Fall fabrics and embellishments. I will also be making some hair clips. I’ll keep posting pictures as I make them up! Most I will use for photo sessions, so if you have a little girl I will be ready!! Let me know if you’ve attempted these. I’d love to see what you’ve made!

DIY Project [Lamp]

My parent’s don’t have to worry about me being an “I can’t” person. Ya know, the downer, the pessimist. Well, at least not when it comes to projects and being crafty. When I see something and like it but am unwilling to spend my money on it, the following phrase is usually the reason: “I can do that”. It can be a good thing because I really can save $ by making things myself. For example, I’ve recently taken up crocheting again for all my baby props. Even though I get called old lady for it! (My dearest friend, you know who are you if you’re reading this) On the other hand I say it so much that there’s literally not enough time to make everything I would otherwise buy, so I end up without a lot of things.

Pinterest. Heard of it? Understand it? Scared of it? Addicted??
My answers: yes, no, yes, not yet.

I hate the beginning when learning a new online social thing. I hate not understanding and feeling like I’m not using it to its full potential. The previous reasons being why it’s taken me so long to start “pinning”. So, hey, if you’ve got any pointers please leave them here or if you follow me on Facebook and Twitter you may do so there too. Now those 2 fellas I understand!

Despite my frustration I did find a DIY project within the first hour of browsing around and decided I could do it and tackled it the following evening. Here is my version of the Ruffled Lamp Shady by Crafty Texas Girls

The dreaded before lamp I’ve been using for way too long .

When I first got it I tried dressing it up with some scrap trim I had. This had to come off.

Next cutting 3″ wide strips of linen. She used muslin but I didn’t want to go to the store and I already had linen.

This made lots of ruffles, but this isn’t even all of them!

Glue gun on and begin….

Done! So cute, right?!

Here’s a side by side comparison.

I really enjoyed this little project and think I’ll hang on to this lamp for a bit longer now!

Happy DIYing!